Noninvasive determination of total respiratory system compliance in infants by the weighted-spirometer method

R. S. Tepper, R. D. Pagtakhan, L. M. Taussig

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29 Scopus citations


The weighted-spirometer method for noninvasive determination of static total respiratory system compliance (Crs) was adapted for use in infants. Ten normal newborns and 5 infants with bronchopulmonary dysplasia (BPD) were studied. The newborns had a mean Crs of 3.8 ml/cm H2O. Their mean specific Crs was 1.13 ml/cm H2O/kg body weight and 0.075 ml/cm H2O/cm body length. These Crs values were similar to those reported by other investigators who used the Hering-Breuer airway occlusion technique. The infants with BPD, who were of the same weight, height, and postconception age as the normal newborns, had significantly (p < 0.05) lower mean specific Crs (0.60 ml/cm H2O/kg body weight and 0.047 ml/cm H2O/cm body length) relative to the normal newborns. These data suggest that intrinsic changes in lung elastic characteristics may contribute to the reduced lung compliance of infants with BPD. The weighted-spirometer method for measuring Crs is a potential tool for the noninvasive study of the elastic properties of the respiratory system during infancy in health and disease.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)461-466
Number of pages6
JournalAmerican Review of Respiratory Disease
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jan 1 1984


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine

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